Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Dark Half and Duma Key

You know what? I'm not really able to talk about a lot of Stephen King's work. It's all fantastic. It's all accessible to just about anybody. And it's all thrilling. But here we go anyway.

The Dark Half: For years, Thad Beaumont has been writing books under the pseudonym George Stark. When a journalist threatens to expose Beaumont's pen name, the author decides to go public first, killing off his pseudonym. Stark isn't content to be dispatched that easily, though. Beaumont's alter ego comes to life and begins to stalk those responsible for his demise. The police suspect Beaumont is responsible for these violent crimes. And that's all before the sparrows begin to fly...

King crafts a tale of bone-chilling suspense with a villain you'll have a hard time forgetting. Near impossible to put down.

My rating: 9/10

Duma Key: A terrible construction site accident takes Edgar Freemantle's right arm and scrambles his memory and his mind, leaving him with little but rage as he begins the ordeal of rehabilitation. A marriage that produced two lovely daughters suddenly ends, and Edgar begins to wish he hadn't survived the injuries that could have killed him. He wants out. His psychologist, Dr. Kamen, suggests a "geographic cure," a new life distant from the Twin Cities and the building business Edgar grew from scratch. And Kamen suggests something else: drawing, an old habit of Edgar's. He leaves Minnesota for a rented house on Duma Key, a stunningly beautiful, eerily undeveloped splinter of the Florida coast. The sun setting into the Gulf of Mexico and the tidal rattling of shells on the beach call out to him, and Edgar draws. A visit from Ilse, the daughter he dotes on, starts his movement out of solitude. He meets a kindred spirit in Wireman, a man reluctant to reveal his own wounds, and then Elizabeth Eastlake, a sick old woman whose roots are tangled deep in Duma Key. Now Edgar paints, sometimes feverishly, his exploding talent both a wonder and a weapon. Many of his paintings have a power that cannot be controlled. When Elizabeth's past unfolds and the ghosts of her childhood begin to appear, the damage of which they are capable is truly devastating...

This book was AMAZING. I mean, AMAZING. I'm fairly certain it's the best of Stephen King that I've read so far. Well, besides The Stand. But that one can't really be compared to this one. I'm truly excited to discover more of the skeletons in King's closet (proverbial or literal-- either way, I'm good).

My rating: 10/10

Coming Soon: Warbreaker (I've finished it, so I'll just need to find the time to write about it.)

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